France will veto another Article 50 extension following a lack of progress on Brexit negotiations and alternative proposals to the backstop.
The possible threat of the EU’s institutions being disrupted by the UK on November 1st is also adding to the argument that extending Article 50 at this point may be too costly.
After multiple Article 50 extensions, last week, opposition parties succeeded in bringing forward legislation forcing Johnsons’s government to ask for another Brexit delay to January 31st, 2020.
Following months of no progress, and a political deadlock in Parliament, it would seem that Article 50 extensions have become the norm, and this could go on for years.
Amid mounting concerns that Britain’s political system is in complete disarray, the European Union has been weighing the drawbacks of another extension, with disruption already costing EU members billions due to preparations being halted and then re-started for a no-deal.
The backstop issue remains the sticking point, however Boris Johnson has insisted there as a solution for the problem, and it can be solved with a deal.
As opposition parties look at ways to force the Conservatives to seek more time, France has effectively ruled out that option.
On Monday, Boris Johnson will have an opportunity to table another motion for a general election. If the opposition parties including Labour, the SNP and the Lib Demsstop it again, this could guarantee a no-deal Brexit outcome.
With France’s veto threat, it is now more than likely that the only way to prevent a no-deal Brexit would be to call a general election to give a new government a negotiating mandate – whether to leave by default with a no-deal, with a deal, or to cancel Brexit altogether.